Thursday, December 2, 2010

4 Charged in Connection With Burglary

By John Larson

Four men have been arrested in connection with burglaries at a Luis Lopez home over a two day period, Nov. 3-4. The arrests followed joint investigations by both the Socorro City Police officers and Socorro County Sheriff’s deputies.Justin Zamora, 20, Bobby Zamora Jr.. 21, and Louis Zamora, 29, have each been charged with aggravated burglary (armed after entering) and criminal damage to property worth more than $1,000. Louis Zamora has also been charged with receiving a stolen firearm and conspiracy to commit a crime. In addition, Robert Gaudern, 39, of Socorro has been charged with receiving a stolen firearm, felon in possession of a firearm and conspiracy to commit a crime.
According to the criminal complaint, the men were arrested following a series of seemingly unrelated events. On Nov. 4, Socorro County Sheriff deputies Shorty Vaiza and William Armijo, while working a DWI Compliance project, came upon a gray Chevrolet Malibu adjacent to an arroyo in Luis Lopez.
Vaiza recognized two men at the scene as Louis Zamora and Justin Zamora. While speaking to Justin Zamora, Vaiza observed several items in the back seat of the car, including a bag of assorted tools and a reddish wooden box.
Vaiza was given permission to examine the box, and found it contained silverware. Justin Zamora said the tools belonged to his uncle and that the silverware was his mother’s. The deputies left the area and a report was filed.
On Nov. 9, Socorro County Sheriff deputies Ed Sweeney and Shawn Baca were dispatched to 2293 State Rd. 1 in Luis Lopez on the report of a burglary. The rear floor and door frame had been broken in and several items were seen stacked near the back door. Apparent drag marks were observed leading from the back door down an incline into an arroyo about 100 feet north of the residence to the spot where deputies Vaiza and Armijo had encountered Justin Zamora and Louis Zamora.
Fingerprints were taken at the residence and photographs were taken of the drag marks.
On Nov. 12, the owner of the home, Donald R. McCance Jr., made himself available at the Socorro County Sheriff’s Department to provide elimination fingerprints. While there, McCance discussed the burglary with Armijo, who recalled his Nov. 4 interaction with Justin and Louis Zamora. Armijo asked if one of the items stolen included silverware in a reddish wooden box, and McCance said yes. Armijo then contacted Sweeney, who took the initial burglary report, and gave him the information.
A search warrant was then served on Louis Zamora’s residence at 2332 State Route 1 in Luis Lopez by Sweeney and Armijo. During the search, Louis Zamora waived his Miranda rights and confessed to taking part in the burglary.
According to the criminal complaint, Louis Zamora said the burglary took place over a two-day period, from Nov. 3 to Nov. 4. Luis Zamora confirmed that Justin Zamora and Bobby Zamora Jr. also participated in the burglary, and added that Justin Zamora had left for California and had taken some of the stolen items with him.
According to the complaint, a wide variety of items were stolen, including flat screen televisions, tools, a Mig welder, a vacuum cleaner and other household appliances, military medals, paperwork, and a pistol.
The complaint said that the three men used a hand truck, clothes basket and plastic trash cans to transport the items from the residence to an arroyo north of the house.
Based on that information, a second search warrant was served by Armijo and Deputy Casey Spurgin at the residence of Bobby Zamora Jr., 2350 State Road 1. A vacuum cleaner was later seized from the residence as evidence.
On Nov. 13, Justin Zamora told Sweeney, during a telephone conversation, that he did not enter the property at 2293 State Rd. 1 in Luis Lopez. “I just helped them move the stuff,” said Justin Zamora. “I knew it was wrong but I have kids here and it was wrong.”
On Nov. 15, Spurgin was contacted at his residence by Jimmy Zamora, the grandfather of Bobby Zamora Jr. Jimmy Zamora told Spurgin that he had seen some items in the ditch next to his residence which he believed were from the burglary. Spurgin later recovered the items and noted that footprint impressions were similar to those at the arroyo near the residence where the items where initially hidden.
On Nov. 23, Socorro Police Det. Rocky Fernandez received a tip that Gaudern, who he knew to be on probation, was in possession of a stolen firearm and was trying to sell it. Fernandez later located Gaudern, who turned over a .38 caliber handgun and said Louis Zamora had given it to him. Armijo confirmed that the gun was the one stolen from the residence in Luis Lopez.
The preliminary hearing in Magistrate Court for Gaudern is scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 2.
Louis Zamora was arraigned on Tuesday, Nov. 30, and is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on Dec. 15.
Justin Zamora and Bobby Zamora Jr. are scheduled to be arraigned in Magistrate Court on Dec. 13.


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